The FHC Equestrian team is heading to States


Ever since head coach Stacie Berendsbode and her team of riders galloped out of the starting gates for their season opener, them and their horses were determined to light the spark to reignite the winning culture of FHC Equestrian. As a whole, the team maintained a second overall placement in each of the three district meets, and found themselves in the driver’s seat to advance to compete against the elite of the elite at Regionals. Not only not did the stallion squad compete at Regionals, but they also marked their calendars to joust for the state championship on Thursday, October 15th.

As the morning of the third rolled around, the lady rough riders composed their game faces and kicked up the dirt in anticipation for their momentous day at Regionals. Individually speaking, Claire Richardson continued her run towards glory by finishing at the top of the mountain peak in several key events. Berendsbode recounted Claire’s season up to this point as “a season filled with consistent performances.” Along with Claire, veteran Alaina Briggs brought in a gargantuan amount of points in the action-packed, English-based riding style saddle seat, and also rode equally skillful in hunter and western styles as well. “Going into Regionals, I had the mindset that it wouldn’t be my last ride as a ranger,” said the grateful senior. 

Spurred from the lengthy history of sports, youthful talent always played a role in championships on every level of the sporting kingdom. For instance, the best point guard of all-time, Magic Johnson, won his first championship when he was just a mere 20 years old, and the renowned soccer player, Pelé, achieved mogul status when he rose the World Cup trophy as a 17-year-old back in 1958. Both teammates Masyn Cole and Meghan Bonney carried on this tradition of youth excellence during all of their assigned events. Coach Berendsbode outlined Masyn’s performance separately by saying the following: “[Masyn Cole] rode her horse Baylee beautifully, and navigated through awful arena conditions to finish some great patterns and score big points for the team.” Meanwhile, freshman Meghan Bonney recorded her highest sum of points in a match for the whole season. By the time the season is concluded, Meghan will have garnered an abundance of varsity events under her belt to utilize in her future high school equestrian career. In addition with Masyn and Meghan, sophomore Abby Satterwaite triumphed to a significant win in Division C jumping.  

Even though there were a few significant delays due to unfavorable weather conditions and injuries to other teams, the rangers still found the light of day to come out as Reserve Regional Champions behind Vicksburg High School on the most vital stage.

“All of our FHC riders put everything into their classes and it showed,” Berendsbode said. 

The lady rough riders will saddle up in eleven days en route to a possible state championship for the ages. The Vicksburg Bulldogs and Gull Lake Blue Devils pose as their most considerable threats, but the ranger rough riders believe that they have the inner monster to absolutely throttle both of those formidable teams; until then, the taste of a resounding victory is ever-so sweet in the mouths of champions.